The moment I breathed in muggy air, felt my skin prickle from the heat as I exited Mumbai’s International terminal, was an awakening. I knew this was going to be an unforgettable experience.
Friends or newly formed acquaintances ask me, how was India?
My voice dies. Lips unable to speak. A simple set of words eludes me.
She can’t be summed up in one sentence. Ever.
Cities heave under the weight of human survival, prosperity and ingenuity. The buildings, some gleaming, newly poured, while others are crumbling and abandoned. Or the pockmarked pavement where motorbikes, scooters and Tata cars jockey for position. The onset of car culture and the American mentality that is seeping in seems to be winning. But the power of a 5,500-year-old culture doesn’t buckle so easily.
The cities may be considered the heart, epicenter of India, but it’s the villages that are the arteries, the veins pumping life’s blood into her, carving paths to multiple doorways of religion and culture.
Imagine this: thatch huts with a sow tied to a wooded fence stand in plain sight alongside a steel waste management bin that’s dutifully emptied by screeching, rumbling trucks that are fueled by gas, not magic dust. It’s this marriage of tradition and modern that leads a wanderer to cover her eyes in wake of a collision, yet it never comes. What you receive is ordered chaos – coexistence between the ancient and progress.
The village injects her desires into the pocket of every metropolis.
There’s no distinction between hick land and the cosmopolitan. It all meshes together. Within that what endures is family. Every distant relative is cousin, brother or sister. A profound, staggering stronghold of community. Then, the holy. The spiritual tangling of India spreads to